Earthquake Hazards in Western British Columbia Essay by MG

Earthquake Hazards in Western British Columbia
Discusses potential hazards of a northern West Coast earthquake and its impacts on urban populations.
# 50078 | 1,747 words | 12 sources | MLA | 2003 | CA

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Western British Columbia is situated near an active subduction zone. The most densely populated part, the Lower Mainland, is actually sitting on the subduction zone. This paper explains that this dynamic geological setting subjects the region to frequent seismic activity and is, in large part, responsible for a higher risk of destructive earthquakes in comparison to other parts of Canada. While the principal city of Vancouver and its surroundings have not experienced a damaging earthquake so far, large earthquakes with nearby epicenters have been strongly felt, and there is paleoseismic evidence for very large earthquakes in the late Holocene. Hazards associated with earthquakes are discussed in detail, and recommendations are given on how to minimize the impacts of a megathrust earthquake and its accompanying hazards. Paper contains 6 figures and charts.

From the Paper:

"Western British Columbia is situated at a dynamic geological setting which causes it to be the most seismically active in Canada and makes it one of the few sites around the world capable of producing a megaquake of a magnitude of ~9. While such a quake has not hit the region in settled time, paleoseismic evidence, oral history traditions and Japanese records date such a quake as having occurred in 1700. There is also evidence which point to these megathrust events as happening at irregular intervals which range from 200 to 800 years. Vancouver lies at the north end of a seismically active region which extends down into Washington State and has its end south of the Puget Sound. Areas directly off the coast of Vancouver Island and all along the Juan de Fuca plate and Cascadia Subduction Zone are very seismically active. The impact of an earthquake over 6 in magnitude with an epicenter near the Lower Mainland would be devastating on the region, if it occurs off the coast of Vancouver Island, even greater damages would be incurred by tsunami. While new building codes to increase safety structures are due to be released in 2005, it may be too late, as a large quake could hit the region any time, and we have no way to predict such quakes."

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Earthquake Hazards in Western British Columbia (2004, March 28) Retrieved March 23, 2023, from

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